Wow. After about 50 pages of what I first took to be boring nonsense, this book turned out to be a beautifully sad, poignantly impassive novel that IWow. After about 50 pages of what I first took to be boring nonsense, this book turned out to be a beautifully sad, poignantly impassive novel that I enjoyed very much. Although there is little, indeed, almost no, action in the novel, it somehow transports you to a place where you, and the protagonist butler Stevens, realize that you can't live in the past, and that no matter the mistakes of yesterday, you should still look before you, and enjoy what remains of your day.
I hate spoilers, so I won't give too much away, but it wasn't until 50 or so pages in that I realized what this book is about. In addition to being written in beautifully styled English prose, it is also something of a historical fiction work. A lot of the characters were real people, though in my forgetting U.S. and World History knowledge from high school, I didn't get it until I looked them up online. Then it all came together. After 35 years of service to a man he holds in great esteem, Stevens realizes that perhaps the "dignity" with which he is so seemingly obsessed, was a quality quite possibly not possessed by his former employer. Once you get past those first odd pages, this book is truly enchanting. I can see why it is one of the "1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die."
Even though it is at times grossly sexual (and I mean gross as in disgusting), the Wideacre trilogy is one of my favorite stories of all time. For me,Even though it is at times grossly sexual (and I mean gross as in disgusting), the Wideacre trilogy is one of my favorite stories of all time. For me, it really captures the essence of the era, and I loved it so much that I read the entire trilogy (easily 1,500 pages) in about two weeks. If you're not uncomfortable with incest, rape and sodomy, it truly is a wonderful, entertaining read, if for no other reason than to show what lengths people will go to get what they think they want. Highly recommended....more